About the Candidate

My name is Stormy Lea Rigtrup but most people know me as Lea Rigtrup and I am running for Position 4 on the Tahoma School Board.

As the only college graduate in my family, I know and understand the importance and value of giving every child access to support and resources that can help direct and guide them to the very best education possiable.  Since moving to Maple Valley 4 years ago, I have seen first-hand the quality of education that the Tahoma School District offers. I would feel honored to assist in providing this level of excellence by being elected to the Tahoma School Board.

One of my favorite quotes is, “If a child can’t learn the way we teach, maybe we should teach the way they learn.” – Ignacio Estrada. As a public Title 1 school teacher, I worked with and encouraged children from an array of backgrounds. Each child faced challenges however having limitless potential. I worked tirelessly to help students embrace this potential and turn it into reality. Often this meant teaching ESL, both Highly Capable and Special Needs, offering one-on-one tutoring and working tirelessy with teaching staff and speiclaist to plan and prepare our students with the best educational opportunities available. I found that by identifying each student’s strengths and encouraging them to use those strengths, I was able to create a more cohesive classroom.

But as important it is to nurture the student; it can be incredibly challenging if not impossible to do without adequate resources for our teachers and classrooms. These resources include providing Teacher Aides (para-professionals), offering engaging curriculum, having up-to-date and reliable technology, giving ongoing training in mental health, special needs and highly capable needs.

This is an extensive list but one that can be achieved by adequate partnerships between the School Board and the community. We must work hand in hand on all education related issues, most importantly funding. This means transparency in all spending, informative communication and expert budgeting. My years of public school front-line teaching experience will allow me to bring a high level of expertise to each of these areas. I will prioritize this because a community is only as healthy as the education system it is providing. An investment in our youth now, is a solid investment in our future.

My promise if elected is to assist in helping Tahoma School District provide students with safe schools and a quality education that will present opportunities for lifelong learning and successful members of society and our community. I hope to achieve this by working alongside our community, administrators, teachers, parents and the students themselves.